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For over 20 years, satellite altimeters have measured the sea surface height of our ever-changing oceans.  This series of images shows the complicated patterns of rising and falling ocean levels across the globe from 1993 to 2015.

An animation showing “sea level fingerprints,” or patterns of rising and falling sea levels across the globe in response to changes in Earth’s gravitational and rotational fields. Major changes in water mass can cause localized bumps and dips in gravity, sometimes with counterintuitive effects.

Students explore the effects of ice sheets on global sea level using NASA data. Using the resources provided, students collaborate and communicate their findings in a jig-saw activity format.

This activity invites students to model and observe the effect of melting ice sheets (from land) on sea level and the difference between the effect of melting sea-ice to that of melting land ice on sea level.

Helping students build their understanding of Earth's spheres and how they are connected is difficult.  Review the graphics below to help identify the parts of the Earth System and the processes that connect them at the local, regional, and global scales.